Few television characters from the past three decades have proven to be as endearing as Elmo. Since his introduction to Sesame Street in 1980, Elmo has become a real force in popular culture. From Black Friday fights over his Tickle Me Elmo toy through appearances in countless movies and TV shows, Elmo doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon.
For kids, Elmo is both a lovable friend and a celebrity. As such, the lovable little red monster remains a popular theme for children’s parties, including birthdays and other special events. In the following article, we’ll take a look at some popular, innovative, and creative Elmo Party Ideas. With any luck, you’ll find the perfect idea to turn your child’s next party into a real “monster.”
1. Make Elmo Cookies for Everyone
One of the easiest ways to incorporate Elmo into a kid’s party theme is by making some bright red Elmo treats for everyone to enjoy. One of the most unique, if slightly expensive, ways to do this is with red macarons (preferably with black frosting for Elmo’s “mouth”). These items can be ordered from a bakery and doctored at home with candy “eyes” and yellow jelly bean “noses.”
If your kids (or your budget) aren’t quite ready for macarons, you can accomplish the same effect with other types of treats, many of which you can make at home. One such example is Elmo Rice Krispie Treats. Using a little food coloring, a halved Oreo cookie for the “mouth,” and some white candy melts for the “eyes,” you can craft a delightful treat that kids will love to eat.
Another popular Elmo treat are Elmo Cupcakes. Using some red food dye, M&Ms, Oreos, and white candy melts, you can take virtually any cupcake recipe and craft it into everyone’s favorite red monster in no time.
There are hundreds of Elmo-themed recipes to be found on the internet. Depending on what your child likes, you’re sure to find something to suit their tastes!
2. Drink Some Elmo Punch
You can liven up any Elmo themed birthday party or kids’ event with the addition of little Elmo Punch. For this idea, it matters a lot less what type of punch you use (though red is an excellent place to start) and matters a lot more how you offer the punch to your attendees.
For one idea, you can fill a giant glass beverage dispenser with the red punch of your choice, and use construction paper or computer-printed images to put a big “Elmo Face” on the front. For a little added cuteness, you might also want to see if you can find special red Elmo Cups at your local party store. Kids will love refilling their cups over and over again throughout the party!
3. Have an Elmo-Themed Pizza Party
Pizza is Elmo’s favorite food, as everyone will know. That said, it can be a bit difficult to turn an entire pizza into a giant Elmo face. Plus, kids might not be super happy to see their favorite muppet cut into multiple pieces in front of them. The solution is to use Elmo plates, napkins, and red plastic cutlery to create a perfect pizza party.
Most party stores will have plenty of Elmo stuff on hand at any given time. However, if you really want to create a unique look for your Elmo pizza plates, consider using red plates and construction paper to turn each one into an adorable Elmo face. You can even ask the kids to help you “feed Elmo” by putting an Elmo face on your trash can!
4. Play Pin the Nose on Elmo
An Elmo-themed take on the classic “Pin the Tail on the Donkey” party game, this game encourages kids to do their best to put Elmo’s nose in the proper place. To create this party game, you’ll want to print or draw an Elmo face with a cut-out area where his nose should be. You can use several sheets of printer paper at home, or buy a large piece of paper at a craft store.
Depending on the ages of the kids, you’ll either want to blindfold them or not, then have them take turns putting construction paper noses as close to the proper place as possible. It’s a game that the kids can play over and over again, and you can come up with dozens of Elmo themed prized (included some on this list) to give to the winners.
5. Try the Elmo Goldfish Game
Elmo has a pet goldfish named Dorothy that he loves more than anything, so what better way to create an Elmo-themed game than with your very own goldfish contest? Keep in mind, that there are a number of ways to approach this game, but you’ll want to keep the kid’s age and maturity level (and your budget) in mind at all times.
Real Goldfish Game – Just like at the carnival, this version of the Goldfish Game has each child toss ping pong balls at a goldfish bowl or bowls. If they make it in, they can win a variety of prizes, including a goldfish of their very own. If you don’t want to purchase goldfish for each child, you can use candy goldfish or red Swedish Fish candies as a prize, allowing the birthday boy or girl to keep the real fish.
Paper Goldfish Game – In this version of the Goldfish Game, kids can take turns throwing ping pong balls into a bowl filled with candy fish. When they win, they receive some candy and a paper “fish” cutout. Using crayons or markers, they then get to decorate and name their “fish” and post him or her up on the “wall of victory.” To make this wall, simply use craft paper or cardboard and create a giant goldfish bowl.
6. Create Unique Elmo Balloons
Balloons are an essential part of any birthday party decorations, and there are a lot of different ways to include Elmo in the inflatable fun.
One idea recommends that you welcome kids to your party with a giant Elmo cut-out holding balloons. Such cut-outs can be purchased at part stores or made at home with some cardboard and paint. For the balloons, simply tie helium-filled party balloons to Elmo’s waving hand. This giant Elmo will not only serve to greet your little guests but will leave no question as to where the party is.
Another Elmo balloon idea relies on the creation of balloons that resemble Elmo’s adorable little face. To pull off these decorations, all you need are some red balloons (helium or otherwise) and a little bit of construction paper. Use the white and orange paper to create a bunch of “noses” and “eyes,” then tape them to the inflated balloons. It will be like a million little Elmo’s smiling at your guests!
7. Design Special Elmo Tablecloths
If you find yourself running out of Elmo-related decoration ideas, you might be missing one that’s right under your nose (or under your guest’s plates, as it were). Using a bit of ingenuity, some scissors, and some strips of multi-colored cloth, you can turn round party tables into adorable little Elmo faces to the delight of all the kids.
To pull this one off, simply purchase disposable red tablecloths from your local party store. You’ll also want to visit a craft store and pick up strips of cloth or paper in white, orange, and black. Cut the fabric or paper into eyes, mouths, and noses and glue them / tape them to your table. Kids will be greeted by a smiling Elmo when they sit down for presents and cake!
8. Make Some Adorable Elmo Cakes
Whether you’re making it at home or purchasing it from your local bakery, there are endless ways to turn a simple red cake into a happy, smiling Elmo face. Like most of the suggestions on this list, recreating Elmo in any form is quite easy. White for the eyes, orange for the nose, black for the eyeballs and smile, and a whole bunch of red.
There are also different molds that you can find at your average party store. These will allow you to craft Elmo cakes of different shapes to create a more appealing-looking cake. No matter the flavor of cake your child chooses, all it takes to “Elmo-fy” is a little bit of elbow grease and the right colors of frosting.
9. Have the Kids Try an Elmo Bean Bag Toss
Games are an essential part of any kid’s party, and much like the decorations, it’s quite easy to devise special Elmo-themed games that all of the children can enjoy. One great example that can be played indoors or outdoors is the Elmo Beanbag Toss. Using several red buckets and some beanbags, you can create a challenge that fits the skill level and age of your attendees in no time.
One idea is to put the buckets on the stairs, with every higher bucket being worth more points than the one below it. You can recreate the same idea outside by placing buckets further away from the throwing line. For added fun, you can print out or construct some Elmo faces to put on the buckets. If you’re feeling even more creative, try adding an Oscar the Grouch bucket that makes the kids lose points!
10. Play a Sesame Street Ring Toss
Sure, Elmo is the star of the show, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have plenty of friends that can make an appearance at your party as well! One game that you can create that uses a bunch of different Sesame Street characters is a ring toss.
To create this game, fill a bunch of empty water bottles and place various food dyes in each one. Red for Elmo, yellow for Big Bird, green for Oscar, and blue for Cookie Monster. Now have children take turns throwing glow stick bracelets and trying to get them the bottles. You can have the points add up however you wish, from each character having its own value to the contestants only winning if they land on Elmo.
For an added sense of fun, purchase a few black lights from your local craft store. Both the bottles and the glow stick bracelets will glow when the lights are off. Kids will love it.
11. Design Elmo Party Favor Bags
A great way to ensure that kids have as much fun as possible at parties is to let them leave with some unique party favors. If you want your party to be Elmo themed, it stands to reason that these bags should be as well!
To design cute Elmo Party Bags for each of your guests, you only need the familiar ingredients: red, white, and orange construction paper and a great pair of scissors. If you want to buy the bags and save yourself some time, most part stores will have red bags of some sort on hand. After purchasing them, you only need to add the eyes and noses to finish the look.
After constructing each bag, you can write or sticker each attendee’s name on the bags, and then fill them with all sorts of treats, from suckers and candies to little Elmo-themed toys. Kids will love the opportunity to take something home with them to remind them of the great time they had.
12. Have the Kids Enjoy an Elmo Dance Off
Elmo has sung a lot of songs since his introduction on Sesame Street. One fun party activity is to take some of Elmo’s greatest tunes (or any other Muppet songs the kids will love) and throw a dance party with them. Of course, while the kids will love dancing to the music, there are also unique games you can play to keep them entertained.
Musical Chairs – Everyone knows the rules to musical chairs, and it’s been a kids party favorite for generations for a good reason. Start and stop the music and have each child try to find a seat. Remove a chair and do it all over again. The last child standing (or sitting) wins!
Dance and Freeze – Have the kids dance as they normally would, but randomly turn off the music throughout the party. When the music is off, the kids have to freeze and not move. Have a parent or the birthday boy or girl inspect each person to see if they’re moving – and giggling counts!
13. Give Elmo’s Scavenger Hunt a Try
Parties with a lot of attendees and a big yard to work with are the perfect place to throw a scavenger hunt. Not only is this a fun and inexpensive way to keep kids entertained for hours at a party, but you can match this activity to fit almost any theme you can imagine – including Elmo. Though there are no specific rules for how your scavenger hunt should go, there are two basic approaches to the game:
“Easter Egg” Elmo
This version of the game is best for younger kids who might have trouble following the more stringent rules of an actual scavenger hunt. To play, you and some other adults can hide special prizes all over the house or yard. Little red “Easter Eggs” can be a good choice, especially when decorated with Elmo’s face. Every kid who brings back an egg gets a prize until the kids have found them all.
Elmo’s Treasure Hunt
This version of the game takes a bit more concentration, so it’s better for older kids or parties with lots of adult supervision. To play, you would hide Elmo or Sesame Street-themed items all over the house and yard. Diving the children into small teams and giving them a list of what to find. The first team to cross everything off their list wins!
14. Make Elmo Party Visors and Masks
Help the kids attending your party to really get in the “Elmo Spirit” with red visors that feature their favorite Sesame Street resident! It’s easy enough to get your hands on some white, black, and orange fabric to cut and sew into adorable Elmo faces that the kids will love. If you want to save your budget a bit, consider using paper hats instead. You can even have the kids help make them.
This idea also works well with masts, which can be made from paper plates and string or pretty much any other craft ingredients you can think of to include. If you want to maximize the children’s participation, you can have them each make their own Elmo mask with non-toxic paints or stickers.
15. Try Out the “Where’s Elmo?” Game
Young kids love answering riddles, and this party game is a great way to pass the time before, during, or after ice cream and cake. Sit the kids in a circle and ask them questions to see if they can identify where Elmo is. You might say, “I’m eating popcorn and wearing 3D glasses in the dark. Where am I?” child who correctly guesses “Elmo is in a movie theater” wins a prize or piece of candy.
Even the least creative adult can come up with dozens of situations to put Elmo in, and the kids will love doing their best to guess where he is. The best part of this idea is that you can easily tailor the game to the age of the kids based on the clues you give.
16. Play Elmo’s Goldfish Toss
This is a super fun game for the summer, when kids will love the opportunity to cool off. For this game, you’ll want to fill a bunch of water balloons and gather some buckets. Wet the water balloons and have parents (or other kids) toss the balloons to each child. These “fish” will be flipping and flopping and super hard to catch. To win, the child has to get as many balloons as possible into their bucket.
For added fun, you can put special “prizes” inside some of the water balloons. The addition of these little toys will keep the kids from getting too upset when their fish “burst” on the ground. However, you don’t want to put them in each one, or the game will quickly change into who can pop the most balloons!
17. Play a Few Rounds of “Elmo Says”
“Elmo Says” is just “Simon Says,” but it fits perfectly with Elmo’s unique way of talking. To play, one person gets to be Elmo, and he will do something that everyone needs to copy. However, if he doesn’t say, “Elmo says,” first, the kids who copy have to leave the round. You’ll love to see how creative the kids get with their instructions, and each child will love taking their turn as Elmo.
This is also a great chance for parents to get in on the fun. Unfortunately, sometimes kids have trouble coming up with “Elmo Says” ideas. That won’t be a problem for adults, who will love devising new challenges for the kids to copy.
18. Have Fun Building Sesame Street
For this activity, you can get all the kids together at a craft table. Give them scissors, markers, and enough construction paper for them to create all sorts of things. Encourage them to take a wall or section of the house and have them turn it into Sesame Street. They can draw or cut out their favorite characters, make street signs, or design anything else they want.
In the end, you can help them tape the results up to the wall, and provide each child with a photo of them in front of their handiwork.
Final Party Thoughts
As you can see, everyone’s favorite little red monster can serve as the inspiration for countless Elmo Party Ideas. From games and snacks to all manner of activities, you should not have everything you need to make your child’s next Elmo-themed party a real smash. Until next time, have fun and keep creating!